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Date: 1762

"Du reste, renversant, détruisant, foulant aux pieds tout ce que les hommes respectent, ils ôtent aux affligés la dernière consolation de leur misère, aux puissants & aux riches le seul frein de leurs passions; ils arrachent du fond des coeurs le remords du crime, l’espoir de la vertu, & se vante...

— Rousseau, Jean-Jacques (1712-1778)

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Date: January 1762

"Sans cet art, mon âme se pliant avec peine à des biais chimériques, l’illusion ne serait que momentanée et l’impression faible et passagère. [Without this art, my mind would easily take to the paths of fantasy, there would be only a fleeting illusion and a faint, passing impression.]"

— Diderot, Denis (1713-1784)

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Date: January 1762

"Richardson sème dans les cœurs des germes de vertu qui y restent d’abord oisifs et tranquilles: ils y sont secrètement, jusqu’à ce qu’il se présente une occasion qui les remue et les fasse éclore. [Richardson sows in our hearts the seeds of virtue which at first remain still and inactive: their ...

— Diderot, Denis (1713-1784)

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Date: January 1762

"C’est lui qui porte le flambeau au fond de la caverne; c’est lui qui apprend à discerner les motifs subtils et déshonnêtes qui se cachent et se dérobent sous d’autres motifs qui sont honnêtes et qui se hâtent de se montrer les premiers. Il souffle sur le fantôme sublime qui se présente à l’entré...

— Diderot, Denis (1713-1784)

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Date: 1764

"But behold, this soul of thought frequently has the ascendancy over the animal soul. The thinking soul orders its hands to grasp, and they grasp. It does not tell its heart to beat, its blood to run, its chyle to form; all these things happen without it: so here we have two perplexed souls which...

— Arouet, François-Marie [known as Voltaire] (1694-1778)

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Date: 1764

"Nobody knows what really is the being called 'spirit', to which even you give the material name of 'spirit', which means wind."

— Arouet, François-Marie [known as Voltaire] (1694-1778)

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Date: 1772

"It will remind me of what I used to be, and Pride will have to come to a standstill at the threshold of my heart."

— Diderot, Denis (1713-1784)

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Date: 1777

"The minds of the negroes are contracted; because slavery destroys all the springs of the soul."

— Raynal, Guillaume Thomas (1713-1796)

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Date: 1780-85; in French, 36 vols. 1749-1788

"Is it difficult to perceive that our ideas originate from our senses alone; that the objects we regard as real existences, are those concerning which the senses uniformly give the same testimony."

— Buffon, Georges Louis Leclerc, comte de (1707-1788)

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The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.